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'Parker Spitzer' TV Talk Show Breaks Up: She Goes, He Stays

4 years ago
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NEW YORK – Kathleen Parker, a prominent political commentator, is leaving CNN's "Parker Spitzer," the much-ballyhooed prime-time talk show she co-hosted with Eliot Spitzer, the formerly disgraced governor of New York.

Parker, 58, a Pulitzer Prize-winning opinion writer, said in a statement Friday night, "I have decided to return to a schedule that will allow me to focus more on my syndicated newspaper column and other writings." Parker writes a politically moderate op-ed column for The Washington Post that is syndicated nationally.

Spitzer, 51, whose aggressive and voluble personality overshadowed hers from the beginning of the show last fall, will remain. He was reported to have been telling friends that Parker would be leaving in short order.

Parker, cast in the stand-by-her-man role on the show, was reported in December to have been fed up playing second fiddle to the motor-mouth Spitzer. Though both of them and CNN issued statements denying the rift, it was known to media insiders that the pair was not working well together.

The show's ratings reflected the tensions. On Wednesday, it drew 713,000 viewers, ranking it a distant third after Bill O'Reilly's "The O'Reilly Factor" on Fox News (3.32 million viewers) and "The Last Word" with Lawrence O'Donnell on MSNBC (1.04 million), according to The Washington Post.

The new Parker-less program will be renamed "In the Arena" and will be redesigned as an ensemble program that will feature Spitzer. Spitzer will interview newsmakers each week night along with two other commentators, E.D. Hill, a former Fox News morning host, and Will Cain, a columnist for the conservative journal National Review.

The problem with Parker, according to the New York Post earlier this year, was that she "seemed like a wilting flower next to the hard-charging former state attorney general."

Spitzer, once known as "the sheriff of Wall Street" for his relentless investigations of the financial sector, is now better known as "Client 9," the alias he used while frequenting call girls, most notably one Ashley Alexandra Dupré, over a period of years. His sexual escapades erupted into a major scandal in 2008 that cost him the governorship, his political future (he was once seen as potentially the first Jewish president) and his ascendance in the Democratic Party of New York.

But the scandal didn't cost him his marriage. His wife, Silda Wall Spitzer, stood by his side, unwittingly leading to the creation of the CBS TV hit "The Good Wife."
Filed Under: Media, Woman Up

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I am sorry to see Kathleen Parker leave Parker/Spitzer CNN Show. I was never a fan of Spitzer's "Cram it down your throat" style of reporting. What ever possessed CNN to put Spitzer, certainly NOT know for his morality and honesty on the show in the first place. I know...RATINGS. I like CNN but will not be watching the new show...there is now absolutely no trust factor.

February 28 2011 at 8:30 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
joe nova

Spitzer is terrific. I have forgiven him for his having briefly forayed into republican morality. Parker's fallacious and idiological rantings were tedious. She couldn't deliver the GOP babbling point memos scanned into her Stepford-CPU, without shortcircuiting. Good riddance.

February 26 2011 at 11:54 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply

Try never to miss Eliot's program on CNN. The man is ALWAYS interesting, and this family thinks, fair-minded

February 26 2011 at 10:10 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply

I'm surprised it took this long for Parker to leave the Parker-Spitzer Show. Her body language told the whole story every night;she was a huge distraction for me. Next to her last night's show,Thursday, she was fuming mad and I thought for sure the two must have had a major argument right before the show. All along,since it's inception it was obvious that Spitzer's energy and intelligence far eclipsed Parker's. Many times while watching I wished he was there alone.He's darn good. Frankly, I'm glad she left. It was very unpleasant watching Parker trying to make the best of it. It was a bad match to begin with.

February 26 2011 at 7:01 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
Steve and Sally

Take him off the air!

February 26 2011 at 9:31 AM Report abuse +10 rate up rate down Reply

CNN has plumbed the depths of desperation and poor judgement in hiring Spitzer. He disgraced himself, his family and the office of the govenor. They are getting killed by the other networks and I see nothing ahead but a continuous slide. Having Parker leave the show will not reserect their fortunes.

February 26 2011 at 9:14 AM Report abuse +7 rate up rate down Reply

GOOD! She was a TOTAL DUD! She has no personality and really adds nothing to the show. She sits there like a bump on a log looking bored and uninterested. Her big problem is lack of assertiveness. How could CNN have chosen her for the job when she is sooooooo laid back. Of course the women are crying that Spitzer is hogging the show. They refuse to find fault with one of their own making her out to be a "victim". The truth is she sucked at her job.

February 26 2011 at 8:44 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to grapost's comment

She made me wonder if the CNN producers ever sat her down for an afternoon in a room to show her what TV hosts do for a living.

"See, Kathleen, they look like they're interested in being there. Watch how they read their lines as if they want the audience to stay tuned and watch the show, not like they're being punished."

February 26 2011 at 9:21 AM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

I can't look at the man without thinking about how he disgraced his wife his children and the state of New York. I was very dissappointed that he was rewarded with a prominent T.V. program. CNN showed porr judgement here. I've watched during commericial breaks from FOX News and found Ms. Parkers comments much more intelligent than his. Could be beacuse everytime I look at the man I am nauseated. One thing is for sure I have realized since Hilary lost to Pres. Obama that sexism is much more rampant that racisim. She is an award winning journalist he is a filandering obnoxious power hungry egomaniac. He should go not her.

February 26 2011 at 8:38 AM Report abuse +11 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to lissel119's comment

It's not prominent, it's CNN

February 26 2011 at 10:35 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

we have a "formerly disgraced" president who did worse than Spitzer and everyone forgave him. Spitzer had a business deal with a hooker - as gross as that is - he paid for a transaction. we have a former president who took advantage of a dumb, naive intern and people still glorify him. get over yourselves. CNN gave Spitzer a show, the current president brings in the former president any opportunity he can. I can't understand how people are able to rationalize that.

February 26 2011 at 8:31 AM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to rimedblg's comment

To rimedblg:

Give it up on the morality issue considering what the GOP's history is with regard to scandals. Just to take Spitzer out of the discussion, US Senator David Vitter R-La. also hired hookers. You know what he got? Well, first no one forced him out of his job and his GOP buddies in the Senate gave him a standing ovation when he returned to the Senate floor.

You have more cheating, druggies and in the closet politicians then the Democratic Party will ever have. Think Gingrich, who left his first two wives for his second two wives; US Senator Ensign R-Nv, US Senator R-La., Congressman Foley R-Fl Congressional sexually harrassing under age male staffers with calls and sextexts and e-mails; Limbaugh (drugs and forging prescriptions and taking sexual countraband (Viagra) into the sex capital of the North American and getting arrested for it (The Dominican Republic ), O'Reilly (sexual harassment and haveing to pay somewhere around $20 million dollars to his victim; Beck (drugs and a history of mental illness; Gov. Sanders with his soul mate bombshell from Argentina just to name a very few.

And I'm not even bringing in conservative ministers who preach morality but have yet to find theirs.

February 26 2011 at 4:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

And he had a deal with the voters of the state of New York, too--he prosceuted people for that same gross behavior. Maybe some people forgive and forget but I always thought Bill Clinton was a filthy, rotten liar and he and Spitzer are one and the same! Why anyone would listen to anything that either of them had to say is beyond me---and don't even get me started on the wives who stood by , so sad eyed and forlorn-- their brains, if existent, must be on hormone holiday! Both of them educated lawyers and yet they are total imbeciles! As a matter of fact all four of them are lawyers--just proves that as a lawyer you figure the laws are for the peons--not you!

March 02 2011 at 10:58 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Parker to join Olbermann in a kool - aid stand in Berkeley.

February 26 2011 at 8:11 AM Report abuse -4 rate up rate down Reply

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